Justification Of Societal Punishments Were Prevailing Methodologies

1218 Words Oct 5th, 2016 5 Pages
According to Kent Greenwalt (1983), both retributive, as well as the utilitarian perspective in relation to justification of societal punishments were prevailing methodologies. First, the main justifications for punishment using the retributive perspective were that punishment was in place due to the offender deserving to be punished for a specific wrongdoing. Greenwalt states that there is a simple justification for using this perspective, if there is an offender who has violated the law that others have to follow, then the offender is worthy of punishment to reestablish the moral order that has been damaged by the committing of a crime. In this particular perspective, there is a justification in place that the community, society, etc. has a right, as well as the absolute obligation to punish any person who is deserving. In addition, if a punishment is not delivered then there is a sense of guilt that the society has to bear (Greenwalt, 1983). The retributive perspective also justifies the use of societal punishment in the actual severity and nature of the punishment. For example, if a citizen commits a crime then the offender needs to be punished in relation to the severity of the crime he or she committed. Proportionality was deeply rooted in this perspective as well as it was justified due to the historical thought of an eye of an eye. Furthermore, retributivists justify their use of this proportional punishment system for the reason that transgressions by citizens…

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